That’s the idea that you push off on other people the negative costs of what you do.
Steve Landsburg gives a wonderfully simple explanation of the idea of externalities at his post RIP, Ronald Choase, reflecting on the Nobel prize level contributions of an economist that passed from this world last week.
He greatly expanded the understanding of externalities. Monitoring and controlling externalities is a major responsibility of governments at all levels. Prof. Choase added to the ideas on balancing externalities.
Recently I said all of us need to constantly expand our brains to keep from getting left behind. I hinted this especially applies to us knowledge workers. If you want a 5 minute exercise in landmark economics thinking that is easy to read, check out that post.
Stretch your brain.